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Monday BP: It’s time to play the kids

Play ‘em.

Luis Matos and Tyler Fitzgerald shaking hands Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Happy Monday, San Francisco Giants.

The Giants will not be playing in the postseason this year. While technically still mathematically alive, you can utter all your obituary catchphrases.

Stick a fork in them.

They’ve been taken out to the pasture.

It’s curtains.

They’re dead, Jim.

Which means, in this humble writer’s opinion, it’s time to play the kids. Many have made the case that it was time to play the kids weeks ago, but logistical issues stood in the way. The Giants couldn’t just phantom IL all of their veterans, and benching them isn’t ideal either. Veterans are playing for stats which directly translate to money, and earning a reputation as an organization that stifles players’ playing time down the stretch is a thing to avoid.

But with six games remaining, and a cast of rookies having joined the roster over the last week, the time has come. Sorry, Mitch Haniger — get going on that offseason work, I have full faith in you for 2024. Apologies, Michael Conforto — if you opt in, I look forward to watching you play next year.

The Giants started to play the youngsters during their series against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Marco Luciano was called up for the start of the series, and played every inning of every game. Tyler Fitzgerald was called up at the same time, and he played all but two innings in the four-game set.

But for other players the opportunities weren’t there. Tristan Beck was called up at the same time, and appeared in Sunday’s loss, in relief. That’s fine and dandy, but ... start him next weekend! Heliot Ramos was called up on Saturday, made one pinch-hit appearance at the end of a blowout, then entered Sunday’s game in the ninth inning as a pinch-runner ... and was promptly pinch-hit for in the 10th inning when he came up to bat. With Fitzgerald playing in center, Luis Matos — who is likely to play a much bigger role than Fitzgerald on future Giants teams — played just 12 innings in the four LA games. He’s had only nine plate appearances since last Saturday’s doubleheader.

It’s time for them to play. The season is over. Some wins would be nice. Watching some young players bring spark and energy and build up for 2024 would be a lot nicer.


What time do the Giants play today?

The Giants kick off their penultimate series today when they host the San Diego Padres at 6:45 p.m. PT.